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Crowdfunded Deep Dive Into The Tesla Semi: Uncover Its 'Guts' with Sandy Munro

Reverse engineering specialist Sandy Munro will tear-down a Tesla Semi to find out what technologies make it such a disruptive vehicle in freight transportation; the purchase of the truck will be financed with crowdfunding.

Sandy Munro is a former Ford engineer who spent many years working as a specialist in automotive manufacturing and assembly. In recent years he gained notoriety for the complete disassembly of some of the most innovative electric vehicles on the market, including many Tesla models. Now he is taking on another project to do the same with a very different kind of vehicle, although just as interesting: the Tesla Semi.

The task is not exactly easy: like all previous tear-downs, the first step is to get your hands on a stock unit of this truck. But in this case the sale price is much higher than that of any electric vehicle on the market and therefore the way to acquire it is obviously different. For this reason, through Munro Live, Munro & Associates' Youtube channel, Sandy has just published a video to encourage his followers to collaborate in this project.

Tesla Semi, courtesy of Tesla Inc.

The easiest way to raise the $200,000 cost of a Tesla Semi is through a crowdfunding campaign, that's already underway as a matter of fact. Something similar to what he already did for the acquisition of the Tesla Model S Plaid back in 2021, which resulted in a good number of explanatory videos of the interiors of this car, including its innovative structural battery, and also the analysis of the cylindrical cells in 4680 format.

The collection obtained through this campaign will be used to purchase the truck. Video views will cover the business costs of the transaction, which may - very probably - exceed purchase costs.

As compensation for the investment, Munro is offering stickers priced at $15 that are 4 by 5 inches (10 by 12 cm) in size, with the reading “Uncle Sandy Wants You”. For those who want to invest more money, Sandy Munro agrees to sign the stickers and charge $50. It is estimated that between 4,000 and 13,000 investors will be needed to achieve the goal, depending on which sticker they finally purchase. The purpose is clearly ambitious but doable, especially considering that some additional enthusiastic sponsors may emerge on the way.

In the event that it is not finally achieved - either because the necessary budget is not reached, or because its acquisition is complicated since it does not have a “normal” sales procedure like a car - the income will be used to finance other dis-assemblies in the future. More specifically, the long-awaited Tesla Cybertruck or the Tesla Roadster, which are the next releases from the Austin manufacturer.

Tesla Semi, courtesy of Tesla Inc.

There are in fact many unknowns that lie under the hood of such an innovative electric truck. The Tesla Semi is a semi-trailer capable of traveling 800 km with each charge of its 900 kWh capacity battery. It has a recharging system that reaches 1 MW of power. All this to feed a propulsion system made up of three electric motors that work at 1,000 volts.

The most curious thing of all is that it has a Torque Vectoring system that allows it to move its two rear axles individually, achieving a sort of all-wheel drive that significantly increases its maneuverability and makes it simpler to drive. Although Tesla hasn't provided many details about all of the above, the tear-down will aim to reveal every technological secret of this unique vehicle, making it an unprecedented investigation.

The crowdfunding campaign launched by Sandy Munro has earned a positive response from investors, who value these kinds of endeavors that seek to explain the inner workings of the most disruptive technologies on the market. In this sense, it is possible to suppose that this project will end up achieving its goal.

In any case, if the crowdfunding campaign is successful Sandy Munro will be able to carry his famous tear-down videos and answer everyone’s questions in one go. Until then, we will have to wait to know what is inside the 'guts' of the Tesla Semi. But in the end, who wouldn't pay $15 to learn all about its technology?

All images courtesy of Tesla Inc.

Nico Caballero is the VP of Finance of Cogency Power, specializing in solar energy. He also holds a Diploma in Electric Cars from Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, and enjoys doing research about Tesla and EV batteries. He can be reached at @NicoTorqueNews on Twitter. Nico covers Tesla and electric vehicle latest happenings at Torque News.